GOLIC: Most unwritten rules are plain stupid. I've heard that batters aren't supposed to celebrate after hitting a home run—they should just put their head down and circle the bases. Get real! I'm not saying you should taunt the pitcher or start jumping up and down when your team's down by 10 runs, but what's wrong with showing some emotion?
GREENY: Another unwritten rule is that you shouldn't try to bunt your way on during a no-hitter. That's what Ben Davis of the Padres found out after he bunted his way to first base in the eighth inning of Curt Schilling's bid for a perfect game in 2001. Schilling, who was pitching for the Diamondbacks then, was livid, and so was his manager, Bob Brenly. But the Padres were only down 2–0 at that point, and if Davis gets on base, the tying run is at the plate. You're trying to win the game! And for some reason that's not right?
GOLIC: So if I'm leading off a game—it's a no-hitter at that point, and a perfect game, too—I can't try to bunt my way on?
GREENY: Gee, I don't know. Let's look it up. Oh wait—that's an unwritten rule. Never mind.
But there is one unwritten rule that I think everyone can agree on, even the both of us. It's this: If your pitcher has a no-hitter going, don't mention it to him. Better yet, don't even talk to him. Wouldn't you agree?
GOLIC: No. When I was playing in the NFL, I wouldn't bug a kicker who was about to kick a field goal—I'd just leave him alone. Let him do his thing. But if someone else from the team walked over and started talking to him, I wouldn't start freaking out. It's no different with baseball and pitchers.
GREENY: It is different, and you're clearly a lunatic. What you're telling me is that it's okay to spit in the face of the baseball gods.
GOLIC: That's not what I'm saying at all, because there's no such thing.
GREENY: Mike, it's one of the oldest, most respected traditions in baseball. You simply cannot mention a no-hitter. Now, I've heard it suggested that even announcers shouldn't bring it up during the broadcast, but I totally disagree. As an announcer, it's your job to tell the story of the game to people who may otherwise not know it (with one exception ). Outside of that, don't mention it. Don't confront the pitcher with it—in any way. In June 2009, Cliff Lee of the Indians was pitching a no-hitter at home through seven innings against the Cardinals. As he was taking the mound for the top of the eighth, a trivia question flashed on the scoreboard: Who was the last Indians pitcher to throw a perfect game? On the next pitch—the very next pitch—Yadier Molina hit a solid double off the right field wall. So let me ask you: Wasn't the scoreboard operator wrong to put that question up?
GOLIC: No, he wasn't. It had nothing to do with the scoreboard operator. If you're looking for the person who's responsible for breaking up the no-hitter, start with the guy who had the bat in his hands.
GREENY: It's absolutely the scoreboard operator's fault. If it's in your own stadium and you've got a no-hitter going, you don't ask a no-hitter trivia question. It's a rule. Let me be clear: I am not saying that the scoreboard operator should have been fired. I'm saying that he should have been arrested.
You know, our inbox has been getting lots of messages. People seem to have strong opinions about this.